The reception ceiling~
The ceiling of multiple batik panels made by the Aluvihare Heritage Centre is a copy of the original that was done in 1967 carried out by the same craftspeople who made the second iteration of it in 1994. These panels were made under the guidance of Chandra Aluvihare, Director of the Aluvihare Heritage Centre and architect Amila de Mel and Designer Roshan Rajapakse
Design: Ena de Silva /Anil Gamini Jayasuriya
Wax resist and dye on cotton cloth mounted on ply board
Peacock Salon and bar ceiling~
Handloom fabric covered the original ceiling in 1967. The renovation went back to archival records of both the Bawa trust and Barefoot to recreate a ceiling closely matched to the original
Design: Barbara Sansoni and barefoot (1967), Marie Gnanaraj and Barefoot (2019)
Handloom fabric mounted on ply board
Peacock Salon wall panels on duct walls~
Painted panels copied from records kept by the artist of the original panels. Ismeth Raheem originally made these drawings as a low cost way of using art to decorate the walls of the salon with clear instruction from Geoffrey Bawa only to use felt tip pens and Samara pigment on limewash. The Robin blue used by Raheem on similar works at the serendib hotel next door distinguishes them from this set.
Design: Ismeth Raheem (2019) copied from Photos made by the artist of the 1967 originals
Emulsion paint and felt tip pen on ply board
Peacock at top of main stair~
The peacock made by Laki Senanayake is the original from 1967 and has stood there since it was fixed in place. Protected by a steel box during the demolition and rebuilding process, it has been cleaned and repaired by artist Pradeep Manampari.
Design: Laki Senanayake (1967)
Welded copper and brass sheets
Painting on south wall of Peacock Salon~
A gilded and painted panel made by Ismeth Rahim records memories of the Bentota Beach hotel and its 50 year history
Design: Ismeth Raheem (2019)
Acrylic paint and gold leaf on ply board panel
Ceiling and wall panels of check out lounge~
The cutwork plastic panes paced on the ceiling and walls of this room evoke the original paper cutwork panel that was used by Geoffrey Bawa in this room, which was originally the all day dining space. It originally used the paper cut work tradition of Sri Lankan often used to decorate Pirith Mandapa.
Design: MICD architects ( 2019)
Plastic laser cut work placed between glass
16 Suites, each uniquely themed
The 16 Suites were made from the 30 original rooms that were designed by Geoffrey Bawa for the original hotel. The suites have been conceived as converted from the original rooms by working with the design if the original rooms and the restrictions placed by them structurally and spatially should they have been rebuilt. Several artists were commissioned to depict and record what they felt the name of the suite meant to them. In each suite, you will typically see a main artwork on a wall in the suite living room and several others in the bathrooms and dressing areas. In addition 6 archival barefoot fabric designs by Barbara Sansoni were selected to be displayed behind the bed heads as well as cushions designed and woven by Asanga Godamune.
Wetakeiya or pandanus palms often act as a protective barrier between land and sea. Created by artists Marie Gnanaraj and Sameera Kalupahana, the Wetakeiya Suite features skillful artwork woven with wetakeiya, and line drawings of pandanuss plants.
An iconic feature of the southern coast, the coconut palm is sometimes referred to as Narikela. Embellished with work by artist Marie Gnanaraj and photographer Dominic Sansoni, the Narikela Suite features artwork woven with coconut fibre, and photographic prints.
Adorning the walls of the Araliya Suite are artworks by Sujith Ratanayake & Sameera Kalupahana as they use line art to depict the grace and beauty of the frangipani tree in a novel way. Look closely at the rest of the décor, and you’ll notice little details echoing the Araliya all around the suite.
Lay your head to rest for a while in the Sandu Suite, while artworks by Bandu Manamperi and Sujith Ratanayake watch over you. This moon-themed suite carries its lunar journey through art and textile, really giving you a sense of cosmic bliss.
In the Koral Suite, Sanjeewa Kumara and Sameera Kalupahana recreate the beauty of these beautiful deep-sea wonders through line art and an oil painting. Coral-themed cushions complete the look and add to the vivid coral reef hues.
Nil Thalmaha Suite~
Dive deep into the Nil Thalmaha Suite to ‘swim’ with its namesake, the blue whale. Depictions of nature’s largest mammal by Sanjeewa Kumara & Sameera Kalupahana will leave you enchanted!
Enter the Mutu Suite, and you are instantly transported to a sandy beach in Mannar. Artworks by Bandu Manamperi and Sameera Kalupahana depict pearls and pearl oysters around the suite, and cushions swathed in effervescent silk, only serve to enhance the lustre of this pearly interior.
Darling little turtle hatchlings are depicted in the work of Sanjeewa Kumara in the Kasbe Suite, seeking the sun and the sea as they emerge into the world through his art. Paying further tribute to the turtle, line drawings by Sameera Kalupahana adorn the rest of the suite.
Brought to life by the works of both Marie Gnanaraj and Dominic Sansoni, the Cinnamon Suite will certainly add spice to your stay. Art is created with cinnamon sticks expertly woven through fabric in pleasing geometry, and Sansoni prints adorn the walls. Keep a look out for hints of cinnamon quills if you stay here!
The Paruwa was probably one of the most rural modes of transport and self-employment for the villagers of Sri Lanka, connecting both sides of the village reservoir. Come sail away with artists Kingsley Gunathilaka and Dominic Sansoni as they celebrate the promise of infinite adventure and discovery in boats.
Sinhala for ‘Sun’, you’ll see tributes to the Earth’s giver of life all around this corner suite, provided by artists Sanjeewa Kumara and Sujith Ratnayake. Kumara’s striking main artwork was inspired by Van Gogh’s Sunflowers, which is clearly emphasised by the burning orb in the middle of the composition. Stand on the balcony early morning for a view of Adam’s Peak, or simply gaze out at the sea.
Dedduwa Lake is immortalised by Bandu Manamperi in the Dedduwa Suite. The serenity of the lake is reflected in the art, as are the botanic details of the landscape. Likewise, blossoming accents around the room stick with the theme of reeds and mangroves.
Artists Bandu Manamperi and Chammika Jayawardena display their crafts with finesse at the Portuguese Suite, with a Portuguese azulejos-inspired tiles and a coat of arms. You’ll also notice the iconic Portuguese ‘twist’ accent mounted on the wall, representing a carved, twisted motif used frequently in classic Portuguese furniture.
All the intricate beeralu crafts mounted on the walls of the Beeralu Suite have been created by artist Himashi Wijeweera, reflected in the lace-patterned accents. Staying in the Beeralu Suite is a true experience of craft. Immerse yourself in local craft.
Named after the Sinhala word for ‘cardamom’, this suite was touched by the artist Sameera Kalupahana. Enjoy the artist’s interpretation of the origins of this spice.